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The holiday season is in full swing and having just navigated Halloween and soon Thanksgiving, it is easy to get busy and distracted and a little lax with our oral hygiene routine amidst the busyness.

But a healthy smile begins with a healthy mouth, and caring for those precious pearly whites and gums lays the foundation for good oral health. Without daily attention, your smile is prone to enamel decay, tooth sensitivity, cavities, and tooth loss from the buildup of acid in the mouth. Left unchecked, bacterial acid forms into plaque and calculus on your teeth and around the gum line. This can lead to gum disease, loose teeth, bad breath, pain and swelling in the gums and bleeding gums.

How to Prevent Plaque Buildup

  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes after every meal and snack.
  • Use ADA-approved products to ensure safety and effectiveness. If you are prone to gum disease, it may help to use an electric toothbrush with smaller heads to remove plaque. Flossing removes plaque, not just food particles.
  • Fluoride toothpaste can strengthen your enamel.
  • Don’t forget to floss at least once a day. Flossing removes plaque in between the teeth and under the gumline.
  • If you have oral health issues, you might use an antimicrobial mouth rinse once a day.
  • Have your teeth professionally cleaned twice a year to remove hardened tartar, and to check for tooth decay and gum disease.

Once the gums have receded away from your teeth or you incur bone loss, you may require scaling and root planing. Scaling scrapes the plaque and tartar buildup from above and below your gumline, while root planing smooths out the rough spots on the tooth root where germs tend to collect. Once the tooth root is smooth and clean, your gums can reattach to the teeth again.

To schedule your next cleaning and get your smile ready for the holidays, please call 214-613-1500. Dr. Ernesto Prida and our team at Stone Lodge Dental in McKinney, Texas, wish you a healthy, Happy Thanksgiving!